"The Equestrian" by Les Savy Fav
Les Savy Fav has been mostly silent since 2001, when it released its electrifying third full-length, Go Forth. During that downtime, a billion new groups plundered Les Savy Fav's hand-me-downs like bratty kids playing dress-up. Let's Stay Friends is LSF's comeback—and frontman Tim Harrington and crew have picked up precisely where they left off, as if their hiatus was a hiccup and indie rock was still bursting with energy and ideas. "Pots & Pans" sets the table with some cute, Ziggy Stardust-style self-mythology before "The Equestrian" gallops hellishly into post-punk rock. From there, the disc unspools with wobbly glee, hitting dub-like depths and near-orchestral heights with equal ecstasy. Les Savy Fav's trump, as always, is its songwriting: No amount of cheeky deconstruction or dance-floor pandering can mask the group's lust for hooks, wordplay, and sharp arrangements that lock into a quirky internal logic. "Don't tell me about the freshness of seconds," Harrington sings at the start of the gnarled, slashing "Scotchguard The Credit Card." And while he's clearly not trying to dis his legion of imitators, Let's Stay Friends does it for him.